Exposé Online banner

Anekdoten — Vemod
(VIRTA 001, 1993, CD)

by Rob Walker, Published 1994-02-01

Vemod Cover art

Anekdoten is a new four piece from Sweden. This album was recorded early this year, and from what I've heard, they have been highly revered by, among others, their countrymen Änglagård. What do they sound like? Well, in one word, heavy. When I started in on the third track I thought I was listening to Ruins! They are also quite dark, not unlike Änglagård, or Kultivator, or even Balleto di Bronzo. Perhaps the sound they evoke the most though is that of mid-period King Crimson, especially Red and some of those wild improvs on The Great Deciever. The instrumentation is, if I recall correctly, guitar / Mellotron / vocals, cello / Mellotron / vocals, bass, and drums. This accounts for a lot of the Crimson similarities, but beyond that the harmonies and melodic intervals they use recall KC, as well as Änglagård and maybe even a little French zeuhl. They have a heavy bass sound, and the guitarist does often sound like Fripp, both in tone and style, even going so far as to cop a few Fripp licks in his solos. Two of the songs depart from the "heavy" sound for a welcome respite of mellow acoustic meanderings, featuring plently of Mellotron. Speaking of Mellotrons, they are usually heard equipped with tapes of strings, choir, and occassionally flutes and brass. Anekdoten go even further with tapes of double reeds, clarinets, and maybe even some others I haven't picked up on yet. There are some nice passages where the two Mellotrons are set up with different tapes, and the layering of the sounds, such as strings and double reeds, is a trick one doesn't often hear. The album consists of seven tracks, mostly in the 7-8 minute range. There are two instrumentals, and the rest have vocals, in English, which fit quite well with the mood of the music. The sound is rather "produced," so there is no mistaking this for a long lost mid-70s album. Overall this is a good CD; not spectacular, but there is enough here to make this a "grows-on-you" kind of album. The musicianship is solid, yet there are no flashy solos or technical tours-de-force that might begin to push this towards the prog metal realm. My biggest criticism would be a slight lack of maturity in the writing. If they improve on that in the future, Anekdoten could really be something. As it is, this is a good debut album (though a step or two below Änglagård), and if you're not afraid of heavy prog you would do well to give this a listen.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 2, 1993 releases

Related artist(s): Anekdoten

Latest news

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Little Tragedies - Sixth Sense – I am having a bit of difficulty identifying my issues with Little Tragedies' third release The Sixth Sense and I don't wish to sound negative. I have tried unsuccessfully on several occasions to...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues